The World Needs Your Story


“The universe is made of stories, not atoms.” — Muriel Rukeyser

Our world needs good stories. Stories of life change encourage us, inspire us, and challenge us. They make this world better. They remind us that life can be improved… and new joy can be discovered.

Over the years, I’ve heard countless stories of people discovering minimalism. Some found it through their parents. Some were introduced through disaster (fire, burglary, downsizing). Some were introduced by a friend. Others were looking for a new way to live and discovered it themselves. But each time, I am encouraged by their example.

No story is the same and each is told from a unique perspective with a unique voice. Know that your story of overcoming obstacles, developing discipline, changing habits, finding significance, or discovering new joy holds wonderful, life-giving potential. And the world needs to hear it.

Your story…

  • is unique.
  • is entertaining.
  • is easy to listen to.
  • is hard to interrupt.
  • cannot be argued with.
  • takes only minutes to tell.
  • illustrates that change is possible.
  • provides anecdotal evidence for truth.

So share your story with your friends, your family members, your co-workers, and your neighbors. Look for opportunities to retell it over coffee, during a meal, or around the water cooler. If you need help, a simple sentence to get you started is this, “Have I ever told you about the time I changed/overcame/discovered _____________? For me, it all started…”

Be bold with this truth. Don’t be afraid of the questions or the rejection of the message. No matter how your story is received in the moment, it will always spark a new thought-process in the mind of your listener. And for some, it will become the first step in their own personal journey of discovering a better life.

Our world desperately needs to rediscover joy, potential, and opportunity. They can find it in your story. And that is why we all need to hear it.

Joshua Becker

About Joshua Becker

Writer. Inspiring others to live more by owning less.
Bestselling author of Simplify & Clutterfree with Kids.

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  1. says

    Yes, boldness is the step we have yet to take. One day we will come out of virtual hiding and proudly say “Please do not buy us anything! We already have enough!” – because it is true, we are grateful for all that we have, but people that like to give are often offended when someone does not like to receive.

  2. says

    The importance of telling stories is truly highlighted when you think about all of the people who think they are the only ones going through their particular situation. They think they are the only ones who are in pain at the moment and they feel extremely alone. If more people just started talking about their pain and the situations in their life that they are dealing with, everyone would realize that they are exactly the same as everyone else. We are all dealing with pain or situations of kind. Conversations will lead to solutions or just some solace. We need to start sharing. Thanks for the post!

  3. says

    Thanks for reminding people of this important point. That is exactly why I write novels. though the stories may be complex, each centers on a simple, core message. I take pains to insure my stories tell something of importance and of value. I often say, “If you want to know who I am, read my books.” At the risk of blatancy, interested people can learn more at:, E.S. Kraay Online.

  4. Teresa Schmidt says

    A friend and I were just discussing this just yesterday. She said I had the best stories which I replied with “I’m single. I’ve got nothing BUT crazy dating stories!” She has stories too. She has a young son and a winery, which make for some pretty hilarious stories. We all have them. We just need to recognize them.

  5. says

    Thanks for the reminder, Joshua. I just finished writing my first ebook on simplicity, and sometimes it’s difficult to remember why people would want to read it. Simply because every story has the potential to inspire and influence, so none of us should be silent if we feel we have something of value to contribute.

  6. Colleen says

    I would also LOVE to see real pictures of other minimalists homes. I am inspired by the few that I have seen. I am talking about the real everyday minimalists homes…not some super shiny decked out version. ;-) I would LOVE to share my pictures too!

  7. says

    have you read any more of Rukeyser’s work? She’s a phenomenal poet. is a project I’ve worked on through my University. she’s most famously known, i think, for that line that you quoted…tiny stories through hitRECord uses it as well.

    i’m teaching a research writing class right now based on storytelling, and taking a class on education and public policy based on storytelling – we’ve been talking about the story of self, the story of us, and the story of now. :)

    thanks for the work you do in this space.

  8. says

    Storytelling is in our DNA, regardless of our culture. It’s also a lost art. I’m thankful to live in a community that has some professional storytellers in it, and I make sure to take advantage of that whenever I can (i.e. whenever they’re doing storytellings).

  9. says

    I could not agree more, Joshua! In my journey towards minimalism, I decided to go on a spending fast. I have been writing about my journey in a blog for the past year. Sharing my story has held me accountable to the goals I set for myself. It also is a great way to chronicle my changing relationships with money and stuff. It has already inspired a few friends to de-clutter and to try spending fasts. I’m so grateful to be an ambassador for this life-changing process!

  10. Oshow says

    In the hardest of times we carry the cross. Along the way I found minimalism, faith and learned to love and appreciate the simple things in life. My misfortune was not what it seemed. He does work in mysterious ways…..

  11. says

    Thanks so much for inspiring the extra confidence I needed to begin documenting my own personal challenge to give more and spend less. I’m hoping to find the joy you convey so beautifully from living a minimalist lifestyle, while discovering my own purpose to serve others. You have a new follower!

  12. says

    Funny you should mention it–I was thinking today that the best way to calm down my kids and get their attention refocused (away from something negative, such as arguing with each other) is to tell them a funny story about when I was around their age. Then they like to take turns telling it back to me. It’s really amazing what little sponges they are–they remember every little detail in their retelling!

Sites That Link to this Post

  1. modthink | Your story | February 13, 2013

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